PITKIN’S PA: MY LIFE WITH SIR NORMAN WISDOM — Ann Axe with Sue Benwell
Like most people, I can remember watching Norman Wisdom films when I was young. Little did I realise that one day I might meet him face-to-face.
In 1994 I wrote to him requesting an interview. He phoned me a few days later. “My personal assistant will be in touch,” he told me. What have I done? I thought to myself. My childhood illusions will be shattered if he isn’t as nice in real life as he appears to be on screen. The following Friday, the phone rang. It was Norman. During the riotous phone call, we arranged to meet at his flat in Epsom. His personal assistant, Ann Axe, greeted me at the door, then introduced me to Norman. As I said in my subsequent article, Little Big Man, the first thing I noticed about him was his extraordinarily blue eyes – china-blue, twinkling with mischief and mirth. He had a full head of neat, silver-grey hair and he was wearing a red turtle-neck jumper, grey trousers and a pair of shiny, black shoes, which were polished to perfection. It was hard to believe that he was merely three months shy of his eightieth birthday. It was such a privilege to spend time with him, and I will cherish the memory of that meeting forever.